Attitude and perception can affect business communication in both positive and negative ways. Pleasant, respectful, upbeat attitudes throughout an office improve upward and downward communication, which increases morale, productivity and sales. Poor communication behavior on the other hand, must be dealt with before it impacts the company culture or collapses the company itself. Colleagues with extreme points of view may find it hard to see one another’s perspective because each has the attitude that the other must be wrong without taking time to analyze the situation. Likewise, employees with similar attitudes may inadvertently overlook instances of miscommunication because they believe they are always in agreement with one another. Turn poor communication habits around, first by recognizing them, and then by setting productive examples.

Impact of Established Attitudes

If you have a firm attitude about a particular business issue, you’re likely to communicate about it with a black-and-white perspective. For example, if you are a staunch opponent of raising business taxes, even the most comprehensive and compelling argument for the need to raise taxes will not register with you because of your pre-existing attitude. In this sense, your ingrained way of thinking impacts your ability to accurately and fully comprehend anything other than what you already believe. Keep an open mind to strengthen the internal environment and open doors for growth.

Inability to Accurately Judge

Any time you have a preconceived notion or opinion, it affects your ability to accurately communicate on that topic. For example, if your marketing manager comes to you with a proposal for a new ad campaign, and you have already decided ad campaigns don’t work, your attitude impacts accurate and effective communication between you and your manager. Even if the manager works to open a dialogue about how to best approach a campaign so it reaches your target demographic, your attitude about previous experiences can cloud the way you judge the current situation. Take care not to be too quick to judge: Hear out reasonable proposals; take a few moments to ponder them, and then work together with coworkers to weigh the pros and cons before making a final decision.

Incomplete Communication

Attitudes can impact people's ability to fully and accurately communicate with one another. For example, if you hire a new and experienced sales clerk, you may have the attitude that, based on her credentials, she should be able to jump right into the job with little training. Because of your attitude about her assumed abilities, you may skim over training on policies and procedures more than you would with an inexperienced employee. This incomplete delivery of information can have an all-around negative bearing on her ability to fully perform her job, breeding low productivity, mistrust and poor interpersonal relationships, just for starters. Treat each new employee the same, offering them all the tools they need to conform to the company's standards. An interactive training program would come in handy.

Inability to See Problems

Overly optimistic attitudes can lead to ineffective communication too. For example, if you have a project manager whose attitude is that last-minute work efforts are no big deal, he may not respond to reminders from staffers that elements of a project are unfinished or that deadlines are in danger of not being met. Because of his attitude, the communication simply doesn’t register with him. This apathetic type of attitude is contagious, and if it spreads throughout the workplace, your business is in trouble. Is it time to reiterate the ground rules, or to put someone more driven and proactive in your manager's shoes?


Colleagues who have conflicting views may find it hard to communicate with civility. Their attitudes may prompt them to avoid one another and limit all forms of communication and interaction. This can lead to miscommunication, particularly because neither party is likely to step forward to clarify or accept responsibility for problems that arise because of their joint failure to communicate. If an employee dispute doesn't resolve itself within a reasonable time or it begins to disrupt the workplace atmosphere, intervene. Be rational, fair and firm, reminding the conflicted coworkers that you expect professional behavior at all times. After all, if you handle difficult situations by communicating with a positive attitude, your employees and managerial team are likely to follow your lead.